QUICKary Review: The Hangover is a movie that’s more than earned its R rating: it’s a crude, crazy and entertaining joy ride around Sin City.
The Hangover has taken the great phrase “What happens in Vegas..” and transformed it into what may be this summer’s hit comedy. The ultimate boys’ night out, complete with crude humor and random cameos, makes laughing at this Las Vegas road trip right even though everything goes completely wrong.
Doug (Justin Bartha) is getting in married two days, and has his bachelor party in Vegas with his buddies; Phil (Bradley Cooper) the cool school teacher, Stu (Ed Helms) the nerdy dentist, and Doug’s eccentric, future brother-in-law Alan (Zach Galifianakis).
As simple as the story is, it starts off as a brotherly toast on the hotel rooftop amongst the bright lights of Vegas, and turns into a night they wish they could remember. The gang wakes up with their suite completely trashed, and Doug is missing, along with Stu’s tooth. Tigers, babies in closets and hospital bracelets are just some of the remnants from an outrageous night of partying. The guys are as clueless as the audience as to what happened, and they scramble to find Doug before the wedding.
Even more bizarre are the situations they encounter as Phil, Stu and Alan piece together the events of what happened the night before. From Chinese gangsters to a run in with a Phil-Collins-singing Mike Tyson, the random nature of The Hangover is what makes it enjoyable. It’s a movie where we already know the ending, but the search for the trio’s missing comrade is completely unpredictable. Everything (and I mean everything) comes out of nowhere, and it’s pointless to make sense out of any of it.
The Hangover is a definite dude’s movie, and even the female characters (mainly Heather Graham as Jade) take a backseat to the outrageous adventure. You can’t help but be amused when Stu shrieks in horror as things constantly spin out of control. Taking the lead is Zach Galifianakis’ ability to steal scenes by making Alan more than just your standard creepy-funny guy.
Though it provides a stream of humor, The Hangover is thin on laughs in final third of the movie, compared to the raucous events leading up to it. The plot takes a turn that doesn’t really jive with the rest of the movie, however, it more than makes up for it a must-see during the ending credits. It’s quite the appropriate finale to a movie that, in itself, is the ultimate “WTF?” moment.